More Planting

I’d planned to go to a plant nursery in the big city (a joke — it’s actually a small town, but since it’s about four times the size of this town, it seems like a city), but my car is still out of commission. Bizarrely, I can go for years with no car problems, and then I hit a period where one thing after another goes wrong. I started out in February with spark plugs that had burned out even though they were only a few months old. The culprit was the carburetor. So the mechanic ordered a carburetor, and a couple of weeks later, when he received the order, I made an appointment to have him replace it.

As with everything else to do with a vintage vehicle, it wasn’t as easy to install as it would seem. My pervious mechanic had replaced the vacuum ignition with an electronic one. Apparently, the electronic ignition doesn’t “speak” to the carburetor that belongs in my car, so the previous mechanic put in an old, rebuilt carburetor. Not surprising, once the ew carburetor was installed, there were problems with the electronic ignition, necessitating the ordering of another part — a vacuum advance distributor. The part finally came it. I picked up the car a week ago Friday, and it worked perfectly. Except for one little thing. The brake warning light kept coming on.

So yesterday, I had another appointment with the mechanic. We thought it would be a simple matter of perhaps bleeding the brake lines and topping up the brake fluid, but it was more than that — some part on the rear brakes was broken, or at least that’s what I thought he said. On the way home, the part completely broke. Or maybe another part broke because if it was only a part on the rear brakes that was broken, I would have thought the front brakes would still work. Either way, I now have no brakes. I wouldn’t be surprised if the part that broke was very old. I don’t remember ever being without at least some braking power. It’s truly scary driving without brakes, even just inching along. Luckily, I only have to drive a quarter of a mile on side streets to take my car back in when the part is delivered.

Suffice to say, I haven’t been able to get to the nursery, so each of the past couple of days I walked to the local hardware store to pick up a few seedlings to plant. I did the same today, but when they agreed to deliver the plants to me, I bought several — way more than I could carry on foot. Which is good, because now I have several things to plant tomorrow. Which is bad because now I have several things to plant. I’m just being silly. There’s no bad at all, and I am actually looking forward to doing the work.

Last year, I bought a bag of potting soil, and because supposedly it deteriorates, I thought I should use it for sure this year, hence the petunias. To be honest, I’ve never like petunias, but a couple of years ago I saw black petunias (that’s what they’re called, but they are really just a very dark purple), and I became enamored of them. So now I have a few black petunias to call my own.

I also got a few cream-colored petunias to plant with the black for contrast. It’s funny to think I spent all that money to keep from wasting a few dollars-worth of soil, but having to use the soil did give me a reason to buy more plants.

The easiest part of the planting was the hanging plant. All I had to do was hang it on a hook. The pole for the hook was a fence post that got cemented into the foundation of the house. When the old fence was taken out and the new fence around the whole property put in, the post remained. A hook, a bit of cement, and the fencepost became something completely different!

I also have a post on the opposite corner of the house, but the store didn’t have a matching pair of hanging plants, and besides, I ran out of money, so that might be a project for another day.

What was so great about all of this is that I got some plants and I didn’t even need a car to go get them.


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11 Responses to “More Planting”

  1. Uthayanan Says:

    My heartiest congratulations for your beautiful and agressif red/orange wild roses, planting and replanting.
    I have read very long ago.
    A plant is a poem written by nature.
    These miraculous beings can breath without gills or lungs, can digest without stomach, move without a muscle and think and remember without either a nervous system mind or brain.
    This summer perhaps you will get other surprises!

  2. Estragon Says:

    Dirt in a bag has an expiry date? It’s a couple of weeks until I can plant here, but when I do, they’ll get some fresh dirt this year. It all sold out before I could get any last year, so had to make do with the stale dirt. They did ok anyway, but maybe better with fresh stuff?

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      Good questions. I didn’t know dirt expired. But then, I don’t know why sea salt, that has perhaps been around for millions of years needs an expiration date, either.

  3. Uthayanan Says:

    I have some kind of gardening experience for the last 25 years. (I was born with a very big garden for my first 15 years.) Nearly with all kind of soils. In a pot I respect the manual. But it is very difficult to understand without really seeing your soil and everyday climate. Please contact a gardener around your house to reuse your soil suppose to be deteriorating. At home I have two type of composter the worms composter and composter for the garden waste. With mixing with composte you can change your deteriorating soil.
    I have stopped every thing of my gardening for the last three years. except I maintain all the plants to stay alive and continue to feed my two composters. By nature there’s no deteriorating soil for the plants. plants will adapt naturally most kind of soils in a garden to stay alive. It is very very difficult in a pot. (not man made soil with chemicals). Otherwise it won’t grow with some kind of soils.
    My grandfather was a specialist to change bad soil to good one by using natural products.
    Unfortunately I can’t use his methods in France. Mighty I have inherited his innovations ideas. But I am not sure. After my wife’s brutal departure I lost completely all my interest in gardening.
    With difficult I try to cultivate my garden as Voltaire said :
    ‘One Must Cultivate One’s Own Garden’

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      I’m just going to scatter any used or expired potting soil around the yard. The soil here is already so difficult — alkaline clay — that it won’t hurt anything. I like what Voltaire said about needing to cultivate one’s own garden, whether a real garden or the flowers of the mind.

      • Uthayanan Says:

        I am not sure about google traduction but I will give you some explanations :
        “We must cultivate our garden”, says Candide to Pangloss at the end of the famous philosophical tale Candide or the Optimist; Voltaire specifies that the Garden of Eden was not created for man to find rest but for him to work there, to exercise his talent.

        This expression comes from the work of Voltaire “Candide”. For the author, this meant putting aside metaphysical problems and dealing with those that can be solved. The meaning has evolved.

      • Uthayanan Says:

        Well done
        To scatter any used or expired potting soil around the yard.
        It is an excellent idea simple to do it and profitable for your garden.

  4. Joe Says:

    There’s always a reason to buy more plants! 🙂 He used to make gentle fun of me for the amount of money I’d spend on stuff every year, and I still do to this day, but it makes me happy, so whatever. As for your wallflowers, I’m always finding volunteers like that, because I tend to let unfamiliar things grow until I’m sure they’re weeds. Last year, something popped up that turned out to be catchfly, a.k.a. None-So-Pretty, which evidently reseeds itself freely.

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      I’m getting to the point where I too have to wait to see what something is before I decide it’s a weed. The larkspur came up in places it never did before, and I pulled a plant thinking it a weed before I realized what it was. Gradually, I’d get to learn what the different plants are.

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